Owners of Blake Hill Preserves Named Vermont Small Business of the Year
Owners of Blake Hill Preserves Named Vermont Small Business of the Year

Vermont Business Magazine Owners of Blake Hill Preserves in Windsor are Vermont’s 2022 Small Business of the Year. Vicky Allard and Joe Hanglin are recognized by the US Small Business Administration for the job growth, market success, business expansion and community involvement of Blake Hill Preserves.

“We are so honored to have Blake Hill Preserves recognized by the SBA with this special award. We started our business in our home kitchen in 2009 with a simple desire to make the most delicious preserves from the best produce in season. and we’ve been so grateful our customers love our unique creations and our team’s incredible commitment to helping us continue to exemplify the finest artisan products and services in an environment of continued rapid growth,” said Allard.

The home business did not last long. Every few years, the company seems to double in size.

In 2012, Blake Hill Preserves moved into a 2,000 square foot commercial kitchen, then moved to a brand new 6,000 square foot facility in 2016, which has now expanded to 12,000 square feet. To facilitate its previous expansion, the company obtained two 7a loans and is currently working on obtaining a 504 loan for its most recent expansion. It also grew from a husband and wife team to 45 employees.

Allard and Hanglin were nominated for the award by Marie Dussault, Vermont Economic Development Authority, and Patricia Putnam, Mascoma Bank. In a joint statement, the two said, “Over the past six years, the company has experienced phenomenal growth and has placed its products and the state of Vermont on the national stage with all of their awards and accolades. We strongly believe they embody the spirit and commitment a small business should have in Vermont.

The state of Vermont has countless resources for small businesses and Blake Hill Preserves has worked with many of them over the years. Allard is a graduate of the SBA Vermont 2018 Emerging Leaders class who helped Blake Hill Preserves create a three-year strategic growth plan. After completing Emerging Leaders, Allard and Hanglin worked with SCORE and the Vermont Small Business Development Center to implement its strategic plan. Its facility was built by the Springfield Regional Development Corporation and funded by VEDA. During the pandemic, Blake Hill Preserves used two Paycheck Protection loans to keep staff on payroll.

“The support of SBA, VEDA, SCORE and SRDC in our setup needs and through thoughtful leadership programs has been invaluable in our growing environment,” Allard said.

Each year, small businesses in Vermont compete for a variety of awards in addition to Small Business of the Year. In 2022, the SBA recognizes seven companies in other categories.

Vermont Roadworks in Brattleboro is Woman-Owned Business of the Year, KAD Models & Prototypes in East Randolph is Veteran-Owned Business of the Year, The Freighthouse Market & Cafe in Lyndonville is Family Business of of the Year, Global Village Foods in Windsor is Minority-Owned Business of the Year, Maria Lara-Bregatta of Café MamaJuana in Burlington is Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Fat Sheep Farm in Windsor is Microenterprise of the year and Phasey in Burlington is the exporter of the Year.

“The Vermont winners are great examples of companies that are helping to build a better America through entrepreneurship,” said Mike Vlacich, regional administrator for SBA New England. “These business owners demonstrate the resilience and tenacity of Vermont entrepreneurs. They have proven their endurance, they create jobs, they have responded to adversity in unimaginable setbacks, and they give back to their communities through their businesses and in their free time. I commend them for their accomplishments and the role they play in our country’s historic economic recovery.

Allard and Hanglin, and other Vermont Small Business winners will receive their awards at the 2022 Vermont Small Business Awards Ceremony co-hosted with Vermont Business Magazine June 16. The ceremony is open to the public and registration will be available in May.

About the United States Small Business Administration

The United States Small Business Administration is an agency for small businesses backed by the force of the federal government. The SBA gives entrepreneurs and small business owners the resources and support they need to start, grow or expand their business, or recover from a declared disaster. It provides services through an extensive network of SBA field offices and partnerships with public and private organizations. To learn more, visit www.sba.gov.

4.7.2022. MONTPELIER, Vermont – U.S. Small Business Administration of Vermont

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